Possession of Land in UK Law

Leading Cases
  • Buckinghamshire County Council v Moran
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 13 Feb 1989

    If the law is to attribute possession of land to a person who can establish no paper title to possession, he must be shown to have both factual possession and the requisite intention to possess (" animus possidendi"). A person claiming to have "dispossessed" another must similarly fulfil both these requirements.

  • JA Pye (Oxford) Ltd v United Kingdom (44302/02)
    • House of Lords
    • 04 Jul 2002

    From 1833 onwards, therefore, old notions of adverse possession, disseisin or ouster from possession should not have formed part of judicial decisions. Para 8(1) of Schedule 1 to the 1980 Act defines what is meant by adverse possession in that paragraph as being the case where land is in the possession of a person in whose favour time "can run". It is directed not to the nature of the possession but to the capacity of the squatter.

    There will be a "dispossession" of the paper owner in any case where (there being no discontinuance of possession by the paper owner) a squatter assumes possession in the ordinary sense of the word. Except in the case of joint possessors, possession is single and exclusive. Therefore if the squatter is in possession the paper owner cannot be.

    What is crucial is to understand that, without the requisite intention, in law there can be no possession. Such intention may be, and frequently is, deduced from the physical acts themselves. But there is no doubt in my judgment that there are two separate elements in legal possession. It is not the nature of the acts which A does but the intention with which he does them which determines whether or not he is in possession.

    The acquisition of possession requires both an intention to take or occupy the land ("animus") and some act of the body ("corpus") which gives effect to that intention. Occupation of the land alone is not enough, nor is an intention to occupy which is not put into effect by action. But acts of the mind can be, and sometimes can only be, demonstrated by acts of the body. In practice, the best evidence of intention is frequently found in the acts which have taken place.

  • University of Essex v Djemal
    • Court of Appeal (Civil Division)
    • 14 Mar 1980

    In my judgment the jurisdiction to make a possession order extends to the whole of the owner's property in respect of which his right of occupation has been interfered with, but the extent of the field of operation of any order for possession which the court may think fit to make will no doubt depend upon the circumstances of the particular case.

  • Bruton v London & Quadrant Housing Trust
    • House of Lords
    • 24 Jun 1999

    The decision of this House in Street v. Mountford [1985] A.C. 809 is authority for the proposition that a "lease" or "tenancy" is a contractually binding agreement, not referable to any other relationship between the parties, by which one person gives another the right to exclusive occupation of land for a fixed or renewable period or periods of time, usually in return for a periodic payment in money.

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Legislation
  • Neighbourhood Planning Act 2017
    • England & Wales
    • 1 de Enero de 2017
    ...... planning application” means an application which relates to land in the neighbourhood area and is an application for—(a) planning ... Compulsory purchase etc . CHAPTER 1 . Temporary possession of land . S-18 . Power to take temporary possession of land 18 Power to ......
  • Limitation Act 1939
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1939
    ......to any person and, before he recovers possession of the. chattel, a further conversion or wrongful detention takes. place, ...chattel shall be extinguished. Actions to recover land, advowsons and rent. . Actions to recover land, advowsons and rent. . ......
  • Limitation Act 1980
    • UK Non-devolved
    • 1 de Enero de 1980
    ......possession of the chattel, a further conversion takes place, no. action shall be ...relation to settled land; and regard shall be had to any knowledge. acquired by any such person ......
  • Land Reform (Scotland) Act 2016
    • Scotland
    • 1 de Enero de 2016
    ...... . . (b) the types of occupation and possession of land that are, or are to be treated as, a tenancy for the purposes of subsection (2)(a). S-47 . Eligible land: salmon fishings and mineral ......
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Books & Journal Articles
  • ADVERSE POSSESSION OF LAND—MORALITY AND MOTIVE 1
    • Núm. 33-3, Mayo 1970
    • The Modern Law Review
  • 10. CARTOGRAPHY, PROPERTY AND THE AESTHETICS OF PLACE:
    • Aesthetics of Law and Culture: Texts, Images, Screens
    • 221-239
    New and converging technologies in administration and mapping have enabled property rights to become disconnected from the facts of occupation and possession of land. By the time native title was r...
    ...... rights to become disconnected from the facts of occupation and possession of land. By the time native title was recognised in the Mabo decision ......
  • Property as Governance: Time, Space and Belonging in Australia's Northern Territory Intervention
    • Núm. 76-3, Mayo 2013
    • The Modern Law Review
    This article analyses two cases brought by aboriginal Australians against the Australian government acquisition of long leases of their land under the Northern Territory National Emergency Response...
    ...... against the Australian government acquisition of long leases of their land under the Northern Territory National Emergency Response Act 2007. These ... made it clear that it would not take up its right to exclusive possession of the leased land, and has not done so. The leases have not been used to ......
  • The Problem Of A Law Of Property In Goods
    • Núm. 12-4, Octubre 1949
    • The Modern Law Review
    ...... and such chattels were intimately connected with the land. Land was permanent and identifiable, goods transitory ... The recent case of an action for possession of land by a husband against a wife may serve as a warn- ......
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Law Firm Commentaries
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